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Subsection 103(a) — As Enacted

Standards. 2

Sec. 103. (a) The Secretary shall establish by order appropriate Federal motor vehicle safety standards. Each such Federal motor vehicle safety standard shall be practicable, shall meet the need for motor vehicle safety, and shall be stated in objective terms.

Conference Report

Contains nothing helpful.

House Passed Act
Same as enacted Act.

House Debate

Congressional Record-House
August 17, 1966, 19634

Mr. CUNNINGHAM.

In fact, this may increase the number work in their industry who have been of deaths in trafic accidents and in- trying to do the right type of job on juries. I say that for this reason. As their automobiles as far as safety is conI understand it, and as I stated in my cerned. They will say, "OK, we will additional views, it is conceivable that just follow what the Federal Governthe automobile industry, which has done ment says we must do," and this may not & terrific job in trying to build a safer be enough. car and they have been doing that So these Federal standards may put a will have the Federal Government say ceiling on performance. That is why I to them, “Here are the standards we want say this could actually increase the you to provide."

number of deaths and injuries and trafThe automobile industry will then say,

fic accidents as the years go on. I be“OK, we will provide them." Then

lieve we ought to remember that and they will no nothing further than that.

think carefully about that possibility. They may do away with the people who

Congressional Record-House
August 17, 1966, 19648, 19649, and 19650
Mr. DINGELL.

19648

........... Modern cars are complex & substantial period between an initial mechanisms, made up of over 14,000 in design concept and production. Curterrelated parts. This complexity and rently it takes a period of 2 years or so the tooling and other requirements for in the industry to accomplish the neceshigh volume mass production necessitate sary design, engineering and testing work

to procure the materials and tooling and discussed on page 17 of the report. It is to lay out the production line. It also explained that the exception must be takes time to make changes. What based on a finding that an earlier or seems to be a simple change to accom- later effective date may be fixed if it is plish in one part or structure may neces in the public interest. This was added sitate a series of difficult changes or ad by the committee to provide the necesjustments in others, and considerable sary flexibility for unusual situations. time can be required for that, ranging Mr. Chairman, it is true as it should from a few months to as much as 2 years be, that the Secretary has the ultimate or more. Because lead time is so im responsibility to set the effective date. portant, it is one of the factors that the However, full provision is made in the bill bill empowers and requires the Secre- for full consultation and, obviously, he tary to take into account in establishing will have to consider among other things standards, and the Secretary has stated the ability of the manufacturers to meet that he will do so.

the dates, and the economic impact upon Thus the bill in section 103 requires the manufacturers if effective dates are that standards must be practicable and not set with due regard to their leadtime that the Secretary must consider whe requirements. ther they are reasonable, practicable, and Mr. DINGELL. Mr. Chairman, I cerappropriate for the particular type of tainly thank the chairman of the Comvehicle or equipment for which they are mittee on Interstate and Foreign Comprescribed. Obviously, a standard is not merce, the gentleman from West Virpracticable or reasonable if it cannot ginia (Mr. STAGGERS), and as the chairbe met by the best efforts of manufac man has so well stated, it is precisely beturers within the constraints of time and cause of this leadtime problem that the technology. As the committee's report committee amended the original bill to states, “Standards, of course, cannot be authorize the Secretary to make the set in a vacuum," and the Secretary, in standard effective later than 1 year from setting standards, is required to give its issuance if he finds that this is in the consideration to "all relevant factors, in- public interestif, for example, a year is cluding technological ability to achieve too short for compliance or compliance the goal of a particular standard as well can be achieved only at exorbitant cost as consideration of economic factors." or other severe economic dislocation. Among those economic factors which the The explanation should satisfy any Secretary will have to consider is the concern of the industry and the workers matter of adequate lead time. As the who depend upon it for their livelihood, Department of Commerce advised in a many of whom are constitutents of my letter dated June 3, 1966, to the chair district. It takes no great knowledge of man:

the industry to be aware that situations The tests of reasonableness of cost, feasi- ' will undoubtedly arise where more than bility and adequate lead time should be a year will have to be allowed for comincluded among those factors which the Sec- pliance—where it will be a physical or retary could consider in making his total

economic impossibility for all manufacjudgment.

turers to comply with a standard for all I will appreciate the chairman's con

of their vehicles within one year. There firmation of this analysis.

simply may not be enough tooling and Mr. STAGGERS. In response to the technology to do the job, or the cost of gentleman, I will say that section 103 compliance on a crash basis may be so requires the Secretary, as you can see, to great as to price vehicles out of the mass establish safety standards, and says that market. Because of these tooling limithey must be practicable and meet the tations and cost considerations, manuneed for motor vehicle safety and be facturers do not make basic changes in stated in objective terms.

all of their models each year. Instead. Mr. Chairman, as the committee report the general industry practice is for å explains on page 16, this would require manufacturer to make basic model the consideration of all relevant factors, changes at intervals of three years or including technological ability to achieve so for each of his vehicle lines and to do the goal of a particular standard as well so on a staggered annual basis so that as consideration of economic factors. each year he has one or more basic new

And. Mr. Chairman, as to the effective models while face-lifting the others until date, section 1031c) of the reported bill their turn comes to be "rolled over" in provides that the Secretary may set a the basic change cycle. Some changes date earlier or later than the 180-day which standards may require can, of minimum or 1-year maximum, if he finds ourse be most efficien

aximum, ne nas course, be most efficiently and economithat an earlier or later date is in the cally made in connection with basic public interest. This public interest is model changes. Others of the “add-on”

19649 type could readily be made at the time nomic production of these motor veof the annual model change, even when hicles. it is only of the face-lift variety. It Also that we have established the patwould accordingly seem that, in general, tern whereby we could have different standards should not be made effective standards for vehicles which are obvi. earlier than the next model year and that

ously directed for a different type of use. the effective dates should ordinarily

Am I correct? coincide with annual model changes, at

Mr. STAGGERS. Yes. I might releast in the absence of some overriding

peat for the gentleman's information considerations. That is the practice which has been followed with the GSA

that it states very plainly in the bill that

if it is in the public interest, and he so requirements and the exhaust emission

finds, then he must come up in writing standard program—they are timed to co

with what these reasons are. incide with the annual model changes.

Mr. MOELLER. Mr. Chairman, will As I understand the bill and the chair

the gentleman yield? man's remarks, these problems and prac

Mr. DINGELL. I yield to the gentletices of the industry are among the

man. things which the Secretary will have to

Mr. MOELLER. You stated that there consider, along with safety, in deciding

might be some differences in the standwhat standards to prescribe and when

ards set; is this correct? to make them effective, and that, de

Suppose, for example, a car manufacpending upon the circumstances, they

turer makes a small, so-called fun carmay influence him to allow more than a

there is one made in my district. It is a year for compliance.

little, one-cylinder outfit. Is it said that The report explains that the require

this man must follow the same safety ment that the Secretary consider

standards that the manufacturers of the whether a standard is reasonable, prac

large cars such as the General Motors, ticable, and appropriate for a particular

Chrysler, and Ford, follow? type of vehicle or equipment will allow

Mr. DINGELL. The gentleman just the Secretary “to consider the reason

heard the colloquy between the chairman ableness and appropriateness of a partic

and me on the difference in standards. ular standard in its relationship to the

Mr. MOELLER. In other words, there many different types or models of ve

would be a distinction? hicles which are manufactured.” Could

Mr. DINGELL. I must say that this this mean, for instance, that standards

still is not going to authorize the manufor trucks would not necessarily be the

facturer of the one-cylinder car selling same as standards for passenger cars?

for $750 to market an unsafe automobile I have in mind the example of the GSA

any more than it is going to authorize requirements which apply to passenger

the manufacturer of a large, luxury-type cars and some other vehicles, but do not

motor vehicle selling for $5,000 or $6,000, apply to certain heavy trucks and other

to manufacture an unsafe vehicle. But types of vehicles.

because of the difference in weight and Mr. STAGGERS. Well, certainly, I

because of the difference in speed and believe that is understood.

because of the different potential use for Mr. DINGELL. And, of course, there

that type of vehicle, I would say that the would be a possibility of different stand

safety standards would not necessarily ards for one type of passenger vehicle, be as comprehensive, or as onerous, for such as a convertible, as opposed to the that type of vehicle as they might be on standards for a standard sedan, for ex

the larger, heavier weight vehicle. ample? Am I correct on that point?

But this is a matter of judgment that Mr. STAGGERS. Obviously a differ. the Secretary will have to exercise. He ence in types of vehicles could require will still be required by this legislation to differences in standards.

market a vehicle that would be safe unMr. DINGELL. However, we are con der any reasonable standards or occafronted with a proposal which does im- sions of use. pose the requirements that the time lim The Chairman, the gentleman from itation be met, but for good cause the West Virginia (Mr. STAGGERS) might wish time limitation may be waived which to comment on that, being the chief offiwould be the very obvious and difficult cer of the committee. problem with which the manufacturers

Mr. STAGGERS. Mr. Chairman, I would be faced with regard to meeting

think the gentleman from Michigan has the leadtime requirements when estab

stated it very thoroughly. lished for orderly and the reasonable eco

Mr. CUNNINGHAM. Mr. Chairman, will the gentleman yield?

Mr. DINGELL. I yield to the gentle- sonable time to comply with the safety man.

standards that the Secretary is going to Mr. CUNNINGHAM. Mr. Chairman, impose. I am satisfied that he will on I think the gentleman from Michigan the basis of the colloquy with my chairbrings up a very serious problem that man, and also on the basis of my own may be involved here. He comes from reading, that it is fully intended that, an area where this problem will present where a reasonable man would say that itself.

these requirements cannot be complied Mr. DINGELL. I might say to the gen

with within the time, that the Secretary tleman that he is correct. I represent not only has the authority, but that he one of the largest single areas of auto- will use that authority to see it to that mobile manufacture in the country.

adequate time is áfforded to the indusMr. CUNNINGHAM. Mr. Chairman. try to comply. I do not know anybody in the automo- Mr. CUNNINGHAM. If the gentlebile industry. I have not been in con man will yield further, I will agree, but I tact with them. But I have read in will say that they are not always the papers where under this legislation reasonable. there is going to be a tremendous prob Mr. DINGELL. I can say to the genlem involved in this so-called leadtime. tleman that I can conceive of a situation

Mr. DINGELL. If the gentleman will where possibly some Secretary of Transpermit. I would point out that the chair portation or Secretary of Commerce man has already indicated in the col would not behave reasonably and well loquy with me that the language in the under the circumstances. But I would bill is directed at assuring that the Sec

rather point out to my good friend that retary will take very carefully into con such is going to be a rarity, and we have sideration the problems of leadtime

put into the bill for this very reason and not in an unreasonable or improper & requirement of the Administrative fashion, but certainly to see to it that Procedure Act which must be complied the industry has reasonable opportunity

with by the Secretary, and a clear auto present their views, and to comply

thorization for the industry to appeal in with the requirements in a reasonable the event the Secretary acts arbitrarily fashion.

or capriciously, or that he overreaches Mr. CUNNINGHAM. I understand the ordinary and reasonable bounds for that. I heard the colloquy, and I lis- good judgment and reasonable behavior. tened to it very carefully. But what we Mr. CUNNINGHAM. My only inter- 19650 say here and what the Secretary does est was to determine, since the gentleafter he gets this bill are two different man comes from an area that is prithings.

marily concerned, whether he is satisI just wondered whether the gentle fied. If he is satisfied, it is all right with man from Michigan who is primarily me. concerned with this, and as his people Mr. DINGELL. As long as the bill is are—the people who work for these interpreted reasonably, I do not believe manufacturers and the manufacturers I could assert any objection either to the I wonder whether he feels that some legislation or to the manner in which it thing more definite ought to be done in happens to be carried out. That, of this regard, and if he would care to of- course, was the principal purpose of my fer an amendment to assure that these taking the floor. people are going to have time to make Mr. MOSS. Mr. Chairman, will the these changes, and produce the automo- ' gentleman yield? biles, without serious financial loss?

Mr. DINGELL. I yield to the gentleMr. DINGELL. I would say to my man from California. good friend that I believe the legislation Mr. MOSS. It is clearly not the inas drawn is reasonable legislation. I tent that unreasonable standards be imrecognize that the auto industry, which posed. is the largest single employer in my dis- Mr. DINGELL. The gentleman is abtrict, is going to be compelled to con- solutely correct. form to good manufacturing practices, Mr. MOSS. It is not intended by the and they are simply going to have to colloquy the gentleman has engaged in manufacture good, safe motor vehicles. with such finite care that we place the I would say they have made a sincere stamp of approval upon a dragging of effort over the years to carry out this the feet by the industry. purpose. I think there is no evidence Mr. DINGELL. The gentleman is abon record that is in any way persuasive solutely correct on that point. I would that they have in any way deliberately not look with any kindness, nor would or willfully or wantonly or negligently the committee, on a dragging of the feet or carelessly manufactured unsafe motor or any rascality of that kind, and I am vehicles. The only thing they seek is satisfied that the industry would not enlegislation which will afford them rea- gage in that kind of practice.

Congressional Record-House
August 17, 1966, 19626
Mr. QUILLEN.

The purpose of H.R. 13228 is to reduce In determining standards the Secretrafic accidents and the accompanying tary is required to: First, consider reledeaths and injuries. In order to achieve vant safety data; second, consult with this end, the legislation: First, provides the Vehicle Equipment Safety Commisfor the establishment of Federal safety sion and such State or interstate agenstandards for motor vehicles and vehicle cies as he deems necessary;: third, equipment; second, safety research and consider whether a proposed standard development programs are instituted; is reasonable, practicable, and approand third, an expansion of the national priate; and, fourth, consider the extent driver register is authorized.

to which the proposed standard will furThe Secretary is required to establish ther the purposes of the act. To secure standards for motor vehicles and their information upon which to base his equipment. They are to be practicable, orders the Secretary is empowered to taking into account economic factors and conduct research, testing, and to make technological ability to achieve the de- grants to States and nonprofit institusired result. Standards may be amended tions qualified to conduct such work. or revoked as necessary by the Secretary.

Congressional Record-House
August 17, 1966, 19629

Mr. STAGGERS.

The Secretary, after thorough con- future, lead to a marked upgrading of all sultation with State, industry and other of the safety aspects of motor vehicles public and private interests will have to and motor vehicle equipment. This part set standards which will affect every mo- of the traffic problem and it is but a tor vehicle manufactured and each item partis covered in detail in title I of the of motor vehicle equipment that is manu- bill. factured. . This should, in the very near

Congressional Record-House
August 17, 1966, 19630
Mr. SPRINGER.

Knowing the realities of life we also As rapidly as possible, all known safety know that no such utopia will be forth. devices and features will be incorporated coming and that accidents will continue into new automobiles as they come from to happen. That being the case, we need the assembly lines. Then, as new and to minimize the damage to life and limb better systems and devices are developed, which will be caused by the second col- either by the automobile industry itself, lision—that of the occupant with his the equipment manufacturers, or by reown vehicle. Obviously, this is where search and experiment supported by new car standards fit the picture and private or government sources, those dethis is primarily what H.R. 13228, the vices will become part of the expected National Traffic and Motor Vehicle standard for later models. Safety Act of 1966, is meant to provide. By this I mean more adequate standards of performance for new cars.

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